Five Ways To Be a Good Gentrifier

Flickr: Daquella Manera

Does this street art make you feel guilty?

Are you a middle or high-income earner, who is probably white (but not necessarily!) and has moved into a predominantly black or Latino low-income neighborhood? And is that neighborhood rapidly changing, as longtime residents move to less expensive suburbs because they can’t afford to live in the neighborhood’s revamped, much pricier apartments? Check off a bingo card if you must: you live amongst hip coffee shops, with white people where white people never dared to go before and patronize yoga studios that were once corner stores. Face it: you’re a gentrifier.

For the self-aware and well-meaning among the gentry, the guilt can be almost akin to white guilt — your very existence can make you feel bad. But if you’ve moved into a rapidly gentrifying neighborhood, there are ways you can be a good neighbor. Here are five things to get you started, and feel free to suggest more in the comments section:

1. Get involved, but first listen and learn.

    Diane Levy, a senior researcher for the Urban Institute who studies neighborhood changes, suggests getting involved in neighborhood organizations and civic associations in an effort to get to know the community. And that’s something that makes sense when moving into any community, gentrifying or not.

“Not everything in a community is easily knowable, but try to get to know the community before coming in and pointing out, as the new person, what needs to be done differently,” she says. “In the case of gentrifying areas, it’s easy for somebody to come in with a certain view of what makes for a good neighborhood and focus on what they see as negative without trying to understand what makes the neighborhood what it is.”

I hear that neighborhood blogs are good places to get to know a community, no? Sure, Levy says, but be careful of what you write, even if it’s an anonymous comment.

“Some of the comments people will post, it’s anonymous and people think they can say anything and no damage done. But write things you would be willing to say directly to somebody’s face,” Levy says. “Because even though it’s a virtual space, it’s real. It can have an impact.”

The impact cuts both ways — negative comments perpetuate stereotypes of the neighborhood, but they can also perpetuate the stereotype that all gentrifiers share the same negative feelings.

2. Say hello to people, and if you have a front porch, use it.

Levy says that greeting people “may seem really simple,” but it’s something that many newcomers neglect to do. Levy, who is a white, middle-income woman, moved 10 years ago into a predominately black neighborhood in D.C.’s Park View. At the time, she noticed that many of her new neighbors said “hello” to her each other. That kind of small-community feel starkly contrasted to her former Dupont Circle neighborhood in which passersby often walked down the street as if they were strangers.

“It’s sort of fitting into that, and in a way, it’s being polite, being friendly, being open. But it was also a way to act in accordance with a neighborhood,” she says. “It allowed me to blend into what the norm was there, as opposed to walking down the street in my own little enclosed world. Again, it was fitting into what I perceived the norm, and I really liked it.”

But what if you get an angry look or comment in return?

“My feeling on that is, so what?” she says. “… You haven’t lost anything by saying hello, and if you keep doing it, some people will break down and say ‘hello’ back.”

And as for front porches: “It’s another way to create those opportunities, because it’s another way to be neighborly,” she adds.

3. Have a baby or get a dog.

OK, obviously you shouldn’t give birth to a child in order to be a good neighbor. But if you just happen to have a baby around, be mindful of how your interactions with your neighbors may change. Same goes with dogs.

“Babies are cute. They’re perceived as innocent. They are another little being around [which] people can at least smile, and if not at least chat, at the corner market or at the bus stop or wherever,” Levy says. “It’s sort of like saying ‘hello,’ having an infant or a dog. It creates more open spaces and more opportunities for positive interactions. Not that it’s necessarily going to go there, but it creates the opportunity.”

Dogs have gotten a bad rap — remember “white people believe more in their dogs than they do in people?” But DCentric blogger Anna John has previously written about how her dog has created opportunities for positive interactions that didn’t exist before:

I hated Columbia Heights when I moved here fourteen months ago. Compared to my old neighborhood, everyone here was rude, entitled and anti-social. I was used to greeting my neighbors and chatting with them whenever I saw them, whether on the sidewalk or in a store. Here, no one returned my greetings and I rarely heard an “excuse me” if someone knocked me out of the way. All of that changed dramatically when I got my puppy.

Suddenly, people were friendly. They wanted to know all about her. They smiled as she wagged her tail so hard, her entire body wiggled. They asked if they could pet her. They told me how much she reminded them of the dogs they had grown up with. In a city where most of us don’t talk to each other, especially if we don’t have race or social class in common, people of all hues and bank account balances were chatting with me, offering me advice and forging connections.

4. Don’t automatically cross the street to avoid young, black kids.

This is something Levy (and myself) have noticed among some young, white commuters in particular. For instance, there is a recreational center near Levy’s home where children and youth often hang out in front. Some commuters getting off the nearby Metro pass by the center as they walk home.

“And I’ve noticed this in terms of white people who will cross the street before they even get there,” often going out of their way, or blatantly crossing the street near the center, she says. “Sometimes there’s an assumption that because they are kids, you will have cracks thrown at you or something. But you walk by and you’re either going to say ‘hi’ and they’re going to say ‘hi’ back, or they’re going to make a comment and you ignore it, or they will most likely ignore you because you are not the center of their world.”

A lot of Levy’s advice centers around being aware and mindful of your own internal reactions to various social situations and questioning those motives. In the case of crossing the street, she says people may want to ask themselves: “Is this something I really need to be worried about? Or is this sort of a knee jerk reaction?”

5. Visit local, small businesses and take note of what they offer. Some sell things you actually want.

It’s difficult for existing, small businesses to survive waves of gentrification, even if they start selling products appealing to the new residents. John McIlwain, a housing and urban issues expert with the Urban Institute, previously explained to us that “if the store sends the message that this is a store for the low-income community, most of the new residents… will look elsewhere to shop.” This is despite what products the store carries.

Those kinds of unspoken messages include such things as having bullet-proof glass. Whether the shop owner should adopt to survive and take down the glass altogether is another matter. But if you need a nice bottle of wine or a gallon of organic milk, don’t necessarily assume a store doesn’t have it simply because of the presence of bullet-proof glass. Check it out first.

  • Sean Gallagher

    I like this article as I have been contemplating gentrifying. Not being ironic either.

  • Kristian Perry

    As a gentrifier myself, I think these are all good human suggestions on how to become part of your new neighborhood. 

  • Guest

    This article is disgusting. There is no such thing as being a “good” gentrifier. Gentrification leads to displacement of a populous, and many being forced out of their home neighborhoods because they become the new hip place to live. 
    Acting like a good neighbor is common sense when you live in a community, but gentrification is not something that should be celebrated.

  • Gustave

    Thanks! I had been wondering how I could make the expulsion of poor people from their communities more civil.

  • Chad Drummond

    I think a proper reading of this article shows that it is not suggesting ways that one can improve their populous-displacement skills. Rather it gives some suggestions on how, instead of being part of changing a neighborhood into something “hip”, one can become a part of the richness that already exists in that community. Don’t judge a book by its cover. Don’t judge an article by its title. And don’t assume black kids in your neighborhood are going to rob you.

  • wza

    omg what a joke! this article is basically a lesson on how to treat people with common decency. did someone actually get paid for this?

  • jbouie

    I’m always blown away by how reluctant people are to say “hello” in this town.

  • Kim

    No one has a right to live in any given neighborhood in which they do not own. No one can be forced out of a home they own (in D.C., if taxes cannot be paid, they can be deferred until the home is sold, at (presumably) a much high price than the home would have fetched prior to gentrification).

    Gentrification leads to safer neighborhoods with more amenities.

    People who refuse to change with a neighborhood are disgusting.

    That all being said, I agree with the points this article brings up. When you move to a new neighborhood, treat the people who live there with kindness and respect.  Become friendly with them. You’ll likely find you have more in common with them than you initially thought!

  • guest

    “Gentrification leads to safer neighborhoods with more amenities.”

    For whom?

  • Guest

    Looks like Chad Drummond and I are the only ones that actually READ the article.

  • Kim

    For everyone who lives there (new and old residents) if it’s done properly.

  • Olive

    I agree, all rights are rooted in property ownership. Migrant labor for the rest!

  • Kim

    Reading comprehension is very important when making snarky comments! I stated that the right to live in a particular place is rooted in property ownership. Not sure how that equates to all rights!

    Hyperbole is fun!

  • Kim

     And of course, anyone has the right to rent wherever he/she chooses if he/she can afford it!

  • anon in NE

    I moved into a middle class (not low income) black neighborhood in NE DC, before any hip shops or yoga studios have moved in… and I try to do all of these things (I even have dogs and am pregnant).  But the neighbors don’t want to engage, they make fun of me for having a garden and yell at our dogs.  So while I agree that you should be a good neighbor, does none of the responsibility fall on exisitng neighbors to welcome people?

  • Getreal

    How about we judge an article on gentrification that focuses completely on the narcissistic perspective of the carpetbagging yuppie class in DC, most of whom will flee the district back to their home burbs in under 5 years, and contains absolutely nothing about current residents, real estate development, city policy, or any kind of useful information that might shed light on what gentrification actually is and what its effects really are.

    Living in DC you get enough of the gentrifier perspective — I expect better from NPR. Why is there an NPR blog on reporting race and class issues in DC that features NO reporters who are black, no reporters who come from working class or poor communities? This is the result: vapid yuppie navel-gazing that completely misses the relevant issues.

  • guest

    Yes, so what about those that are displaced? Why are they not factored into the costs and benefits of gentrification?

  • Dccolney

    five ways to be a good original neighborhood resident:

    - don’t litter
    - don’t yell curses down the street to your friends
    - say hi to new people (often white in color, wearing flip flops and sunglasses)
    - take care of the front of your house
    - don’t drink on street corners

    i’m just saying, it would help make gentrifying easier

  • Anonymous

    Wow. Elahe Izadi, can you tell me more about my white guilt? About how “my very existence makes me feel bad”? Tell me more about how white people are worse community members than Black and Latino people. I want to hear all your thoughts on this. Thanks for understanding my self-hatred and insufficency so thoroughly; without your advice, I would probably never learn to be human. I’d forever be doomed to be just another white person.

  • White Angel
  • Eliot

    I don’t entirely agree with the suggestion about dogs. It might depend on the neighborhood. Back when I lived off U St., the vast majority of black people in that neighborhood were freaked out by dogs. I’m not entirely sure why. When I moved over to H St NE, I was a little worried that it might be the same. I couldn’t have been more wrong! It is now quite rare for somebody to cross the street because of the dog.

    So, dogs can get you out in the neighborhood more, which is definitely a plus. But, I’d observe the neighborhood first to see if people are receptive to other dogs.

  • Kim

    Please point out where I said they aren’t.

  • Decent human

    Please tell me this is joke. If not, it might be the most offensive thing I’ve ever seen on this blog.

  • Kim

    This article is one of 58 on gentrification on DCentric. Every piece is not meant to cover every aspect of gentrification. (And it would be silly to expect all pieces to do so.)

    This blog features two reporters. It’s a bit disingenuous to make such a big deal about featuring no reporters who meet your qualifications when only two reporters are featured. I think that point would hold more weight if there were more reporters featured.

  • Guest

    Please point out where you made any reference to people displaced by gentrification.

  • Decolonize

    Maybe they are deliberately making gentrifying harder.

  • Kim

    This might be hard to believe, but I did not intend to address every issue related to gentrification in a comment on a blog. Crazy, I know!

    Nice try, though!

  • Sockpuppet

    “Kim,” please explain how it makes sense to have a blog about race and class issues in DC without a single black writer. This city is still majority black!

  • Kim

    I don’t think a writer’s qualifications should be judged based on said person’s race. Call me crazy! I also think it’s silly to raise a stink about it when there are a total of two writers. Like I said, if the blog employed a larger writing staff, I believe this complaint would hold more weight.

    And the city is majority black, but it’s a slim majority (50.7%). 

  • Guest

    I will take your response as willful naivety, as my comments were not meant to be taken as a personal attack. You stated:

    “Gentrification leads to safer neighborhoods with more amenities.”

    This of course elides what gentrification actually is: the economic displacement of people. You chose to focus on the “neighborhood” instead of the actual people involved. My comments were to suggest that this is a grave error, that we must always remember that poor people who leave do not simply disappear when they cease to occupy valuable real estate. This is what must be foregrounded when we speak of gentrification. Otherwise you might as well say “slavery leads to cheap high quality cotton products” — the error is the same, you have ignored the injustice that causes the controversy.

  • Editor

    Kim, don’t you see how you just implied that there are no qualified black writers in DC? Also, don’t you see why having a black DC writer to cover race issues in DC might be important?

  • Kim

    I have not ignored that, I just did not specifically address it in my comment. Again, my comment was not meant to address every. single. aspect. of gentrification. To compare it to slavery is disingenuous as no sensible person would genuinely believe that the two are comparable.

    Now that you have become personal by attributing my comments to “willful naviete,” I am done, as I am not interested it engaging in a debate with someone who attacks the person, not the argument. Have a great day.

    Before I leave, I wanted to say that you might be interested to know that I am a long time resident (28 years, my whole life minus a few years spent in college) of a neighborhood that is currently gentrifying. My family has lived in said neighborhood much longer than that (and longer than any of us has been alive). I have seen neighbors come and go and it is sad when people are forced to leave, but to compare it to slavery does a horrible disservice to the injustices that slaves actually suffered.

  • Kim

    Actually, a simple logic course would show that I did not just imply that. Saying that two people (the two writers of this blog) are qualified for a job does not mean that no one else is also qualified.

    I see your point, I simply disagree with it. Lack of agreement does not indicate lack of understanding.

    Anyway, I am done with this post. Have a good day all!

  • Wza

    Chad and ‘guest’, what you miss about this article is that it seems to be designed for people so dense about humanity that they have to basically google how to be neighborly without putting out an air of self-righteousness. Unfortunately you can’t really learn sincerity by googling it.

  • Bfinstock

    any tips on what I should do after I’ve not crossed the street to avoid the black kids, have said hello to them, and then have “boo!” yelled at me ever since I asked them not to smoke dope and piss in the alley? But hey, I go to the corner stores. The korean owners seem to love me. Maybe because I have the money for the products I put next to the register. Maybe it’s because I don’t piss on their storefront. Maybe it’s both. But, yeah, the onus is on me to fit in. The neighborhood was so obviously perfect before I arrived.

  • Bfinstock

    I dare you to make less sense.

  • guest

    the ones who get displaced go to PG county and make the crime rate spike in MD instead of D.C.

  • Oboe Eobo

    Don’t automatically cross the street to avoid young, black kids.
    It *is* rather rude.  The neighborly thing to do is to wave, say ‘Hi’, then turn your head ever so slightly as you pass, so when they punch you in the back of the head and steal your iPhone, they won’t overextend their shoulder.

    Look, I’m all for being neighborly.  My neighbors are great.  Most of them are young couples, and quite diverse (and no, I don’t mean “DC diverse”, as in code for “99.9% poor and black”).  And we’ve got plenty of old-timers in the neighborhood, too.  Everyone looks out for them.  Their kids took off for the suburbs and abandoned them.  And, no, they weren’t “priced out”, they had a choice between a 100 year old 1500 sq ft row house in the old ‘hood, or a 4000 sq ft McMansion in PG County, and jumped at it in a heartbeat.

    Getting back to the safety issue:  you can always tell the old timers in my neighborhood.  While you’re right, they don’t “cross the street” when they see a gang of kids coming their way, they actually walk in th street as an old habit to avoid muggers.   So let’s save the naive, first-time-in-a-city, victim-waiting-to-happen advice.  If I see one young black boy, I say ‘Hi’.  If I see two or three, I say ‘Hi’.  If I see 5-10?  I cross the damned street.  And you can bet my black neighbors do to, unless they know them personally.  In a heartbeat.

    Oh, one more thing:  the whole “White folks don’t say ‘Hi’” thing is a bit tired as well.  When I go to the grocery store, you know doesn’t say ‘Hi’?  Middle-aged black women.  Actually, some do, but a sizable percentage don’t just not say, ‘Hi’, but they give you a look as though the number of the Beast were tattooed to your forehead. 

    Sorry to join in the ridicule, but this article is ridiculous.  Every study of  gentrification has shown a) the displacement effect is minimal and that b) the folks who do choose to stay see an advancement in their economic position in almost every category.

    This is all misplaced resentment that Auntie moved to Atlanta and that fish place moved out Central Ave.  But look!  White people twittering!

  • JoPo

    So as long as I smile at my neighbors and make a baby, it’s ok if my presence is causing displacement? Please. This article completely ignores the role that developers and policymakers have in driving gentrification. How about some tips on how to help make sure new amenities, housing options, and good schools can be enjoyed by the community that was there before developers and city planners took an interest in moving rich, white newcomers there? My #6 would be solidarity organizing, like joining CNHED’s Housing for All Campaign ( 

    Here’s my take on gentrification in DC:

  • Guest

    No, the onus is on everyone else to accommodate you. After all, you have money.

  • AWG

    So, being a “good” gentrifier means smiling more and spreading your upwardly mobile cash around? What about TRYING TO MITIGATE GENTRIFICATION? 

    Here’s five for you: 

    1. Move to a block that’s already gentrified 
    Say, west of 10th St NE/SE west of the river. Limit your search to areas that have already changed. New census data make this easier.

    2. Take an active interest in following the leadership of longtime residents
    Whether on your block or a citywide organization like ONE DC or Empower DC, find out what longtime residents want, particularly those without the $ and connections to push their agenda the way Greater Greater Washington and other gentrifiers do. 

    3. Find out how people like you are already involved in mitigating gentrification
    Helping out with DC Books to Prisons’ DC Jail Library Project, volunteering for Helping Individual Prostitutes Survive, donating to the LEDC’s Affordable Housing Program to fund tenant organizers, finding out what Save Our Safety Net DC and Jews United for Justice are up to.

    4. Spend a day at the Washingtoniana Room of the DCPL MLK Jr Library
    Browse the books, ask for the file catalog index. Really. 

    5. Don’t rely on gentrifier blogs like DCentric for your news 
    Listen to WPFW and RadioCPR, look for the Washington Afro, follow the GMP and Fight Back 

  • DHDC

    Unless you are part of the clovis culture, aren’t you displacing people? 

  • Anonymous

    Wow.  People seem to be really upset by this silly little article.  As a member of the gentry who lived near Lincoln Park through the mid Eighties and early Nineties and in Shaw in the early to mid Aughts, I promise you that, objectively speaking, gentrification is a good thing for anyone who would rather not live in a shit-hole.  This goes for people of all races.  Anyone who would claim otherwise either doesn’t mind living in a shit-hole or is weighed down by a ton of liberal-arts guilt.

    Also, the advice about not crossing the street to avoid groups of black kids in DC is just foolish.  By all means be polite to your neighbors, say hello to people on the street, try not to be furious when you find yourself double-parked in by a churchgoer from PG county, but for Christ’s sake, cross the street if you see a group of neighborhood kids loitering on the sidewalk. I’m six feet tall, 190 pounds, 33 years old and I’ve had rocks thrown at me by groups of kids no older than thirteen.

  • Anon

    This article would have benefited from some “on the street” interviews.  If you’re going to “report” on DC’s neighborhoods, a noble goal, it would make sense to ask people in neighborhoods what they think. 

    The data isn’t great, but it appears that assumptions about mass displacement as a result of transformation are wrong  The following article, which is outstanding, goes into it:

  • Sean Gallagher

    this article contemplates my liking gentrifier .  isnt ironic being.

  • Dbrighthaupt

    Agreed-  I live in SE behind Anacostia HS and the ‘take care of the front of your house’ bullet hit a problematic nerve for me.  I loathe sweeping my entire block on a weekly basis.  But as soon as i pick up a bottle, the sooner two bottles drop.  My rationale is if I ignore the trash in from of my trifeling neighbors’ yard, eventually its bound to land in front of mine, via wind, rain, kid kicking it, ect.  Also I had strong reactions on a Twitter post from a white ‘Near SE’ resident annoyed to see the ‘Save Our Chocolate City’ posters.  He threated to tear them down.  I suggested he leave be the free speech of what has dwindled down to sweet nostalgia. Because if the right person caught him tearing it down, that action just may spark a legitimate movement, i.e., choose your gentrification battles wisely.  Warmly,  Donna Watts

  • Brittnay Proctor

    This is one of the most disturbing articles I’ve ever read. Again, those that are most affected by gentrification; bodies that are displaced, (overwhelming BLACK bodies) are left voice-less. Why was there no consideration to interview folk that are being displaced? Or are on the verge of having to leave their HOME because white hipsters wanna retain being on the outside, but always have the option of looking in. Guess what, it’s not “Cool” to be Black if it means loosing everything generations of Black folk have worked towards passing through generations. 

    How insensitive!! If anything, this article suggests ways to normalize gentrification as a “way of life” and does NO job of posing a critique of gentrification in the first place. Of all places for such an article to exist. :( DCentric should be beyond ashamed for pulling something like this, more ashamed than they should be not having ONE black writer for it’s blog…

  • Brittnay Proctor

    This is one of the most disturbing articles I’ve ever read. Again, those that are most affected by gentrification; bodies that are displaced, (overwhelming BLACK bodies) are left voice-less. Why was there no consideration to interview folk that are being displaced? Or are on the verge of having to leave their HOME because white hipsters wanna retain being on the outside, but always have the option of looking in. Guess what, it’s not “Cool” to be Black if it means loosing everything generations of Black folk have worked towards passing through generations. 

    How insensitive!! If anything, this article suggests ways to normalize gentrification as a “way of life” and does NO job of posing a critique of gentrification in the first place. Of all places for such an article to exist. :( DCentric should be beyond ashamed for pulling something like this, more ashamed than they should be not having ONE black writer for it’s blog…

  • JE

    JoPo’s link didn’t work for me the first time. But I found this one did:

  • Will Lavy

    I would argue that the negative effects of gentrification are somewhat misundersood.  As I describe below, “original” homeowners in gentrifying neighborhoods reap significant benefit from gentrification.  Renters are much more exposed though, supporting an argument for strong affordable rental housing policies.

    Let’s consider the choices available to a low-income household in a gentrifying/transitioning/etc community.  If they’ve lived there for a long time, they are most likely homeowners who were able to purchase long ago when prices were more modest. As the community becomes inhabited by higher income earners (either because welatheir families move in or because existing families earn more money/wealth over time), real estate prices rise, as do property taxes.  If the household cannot afford the higher property taxes, they might be compelled to move away. (I would argue this is less common in a place like DC where we have very low property tax rates, especially relative to MD and VA).  For the homeowner there’s very little else that might “push” them out, unless they simply don’t like the changes they’re seeing in the nighborhood.  (Again, I would argue that this is unlikely to “push” a household away if gentrification is associated with greater community amenities and improved safety, but others may disagree).  Otherwise, “original” residents will move out for all the same reasons everyone else does – their family size is changing, they’re following a job, they want to move to a neighborhood with better schools, etc.  And when they do move out, they gain considerable wealth from their home thanks to the higher real estate prices in the neighborhood.

    My wife and I purchased our house from the son of a long-time resident who had passed away. The son needed to pay off some debt and wanted to move to Mississippi and he sold it to us, very happy to get much more out of the house than he had ever thought possible and to leave DC.  It was a win-win.  We moved into a neighborhood and house that we loved and could afford and he found himself with much greater financial stability and the flexibility to do what he wanted in life.

    Now let’s consider the choices of a renter. The renter is far more exposed to real estate price increases that come with gentrification, particualrly if there’s an ineffective rent regulation structure in placethat limits how quickly rents may rise each year.  Low-income families are much more likely to rent and as a result have a much harder time living and staying in “good” neighborhoods. Unlike homeowners, they have no right to remain in a neighborhood. Market prices dictate whether they can stay.  This is why it’s so important, from a public policy perspective, to preserve and develop affordable rental housing options in good neighborhoods.  Otherwise, the market result is income segregation and relegating low-income families to the worst neighborhoods.

    Long-story short, i appreciate efforts like this article that encourage community-building in diverse neighborhoods.  (As a side note, it could have been titled “Five Ways to build community When You don’t Live In a Homogenous Neighborhood”).  The benefits and drawbacks of having communities gentrify is a separate and rich topic worth further exploration. I’d love to hear stories of people who feel like they’ve gotten the short-end of gentrification to understand who and how that happens and what can be done to ameliorate it.

  • Sardonic_sob

    It would also be thoughtful to leave a nice farewell gift basket on the stoop of any building where a visible eviction notice is posted. These little touches are always appreciated.

  • Guest

    Move to a block that’s already gentrified you say?  Hm, great idea.  Why didn’t I think of that?  Oh right,  I didn’t have $500k plus to spend on a house.  

    Call it what you will, but everyone has the right to buy property where they can afford it.  The property I was able to afford happens to be in a lower income neighborhood.  Guess what, my neighbors have accepted me and even welcome my presence because I took the time to get to know them.  Tell me you think cleaning up a trash-filled street and planting some tree boxes is a bad thing.  Tell me it doesn’t benefit the already existing neighbors.  Go ahead, ask them if they’re against it.

    I also have to wonder if all you “anti-gentrification” activists have ever actually set foot in any of the neighborhoods you speak of?

  • Dbrighthaupt

    Mr. Lavy – You’ve come the closest to addressing this very difficult to explain problem.  The authors’ title was so off-putting, it created rage from my sect.  I couldn’t attempt to find a calm medium to see her point.  I’d concluded there is no way to be a Good (Angelic) Gentrifyer~Period!  But sir, I own in Anacostia, I’m frustrated w/ most renters on my block.  I embrace black people and hate niggers (I can say that word lol ;-) .  And I was elated the first time I saw gay white men jogging Anacostia Park at 6am -because I welcome diversity….not gentrification.  Your comment shed light on the differences when you are a homeowner looking for the same qualities of life as any other American whose worked to invest in their future.  And not discounting the transitional Market rate yuppy/buppy renter who chooses to rent in the same area for various reasons.  Thank you sir.  This is a great start.  I hope you don’t mind if I post it on my FB page.  Kindly,  Donna Watts-Brighthaupt 

  • Anonymous

    It’s “populace,” goddammit. Clue in!

  • Elahe Izadi

    We typically don’t allow comments with abusive language, profanity or slurs, but this comment as a whole contributes to the discussion taking place so we will allow it to remain. In the future we will delete comments containing derogatory language.

  • Elahe Izadi

    I just wanted to thank everyone for their comments. Many of them offered insightful and interesting points and critiques. We will be revisiting these issues in the coming weeks and months, and I look forward to more dialogue and conversation.